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Former De Kock Star Retires

'Interest in America was bleak'

Grade 1 winner Mubtaahij has been retired from racing and will likely head to South America for stud duty, according to bloodstock agent Donato Lanni.

The 2017 Awesome Again Stakes (G1) winner, who was trained by Mike de Kock, Kiaran McLaughlin, and Bob Baffert during his career, is currently stabled at Hill ‘n’ Dale Farms in Kentucky and doesn’t have a stallion deal finalized yet, but he will most likely stand his first season in Argentina, Lanni said, because “interest in America was bleak.”

Mubtaahij

“He’s going to stand in Argentina, but we don’t know where yet,” Lanni said of the 7-year old son of Dubawi. “We’d love to stand him here, but we’ll start there and see what happens. I believe in the horse, but, unfortunately, I don’t have 100 mares to breed to him. He’s bred for turf, but he’s made  a classic dirt horse.”

Along with his Awesome Again score for Baffert, Mubtaahij won or placed in 10 other grade/group events and earned more than $5.7 million for owner Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa al Maktoum.

In 2018, his final racing season, Mubtaahij placed in all four of his races—thirds in the Dubai World Cup Sponsored By Emirates Airline (G1) and San Pasqual Stakes (G2) and seconds in the Santa Anita Handicap Presented by San Manuel Indian Bingo and Casino (G1) and Lone Star Park Handicap (G3).

He raced in the Dubai World Cup three times. Along with his effort in 2018, he finished second in 2016 and fourth in 2017.

Mubtaahij began his racing career with de Kock in Newmarket and then Dubai, where he won the 2015 UAE Derby Sponsored By Saeed & Mohammed Al Naboodah Group (G2) to punch his ticket to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1), where he finished eighth.

He also competed in the Belmont Stakes presented by DraftKings (G1) that year, where he challenged Triple Crown winner American Pharoah in the final turn at Belmont Park but faded to fourth.

Bred in Ireland by Dunmore Stud out of the Pennekamp mare Pennegale, Mubtaahij sold to Form Bloodstock for $599,760 when he was consigned by Haras d’Hotellerie to the 2013 Arqana Deauville August Yearling Sale.

He retired with a record of 5-6-4 from 24 starts and earnings of $5,780,332. After his Kentucky Derby effort, he only finished out of the top five once—in the 2017 Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1)—over his final 16 starts.

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